Dried specimen of prenanthes purpurea collected by Joseph and Agnes Lister on 24 Sept 1883 at Csorba Lake in the Tatra Mountains, Slovakia. Specimen is loose on a grey sheet of paper. See inscription field.
Herbarium sheets are the most common means of recording a plant on paper, as dried specimens provide botanists with direct visual comparisons. These are two of 52 specimens collected by surgeon Sir Joseph Lister and his wife Agnes while touring eastern Europe in 1883. Each is labelled with its Latin name following the categories commonly used by all botanists from the 18th century. The labels appear in both Joseph’s and Agnes’s handwriting, showing the project was a joint effort. Botany was one of few sciences considered appropriate for women to practise in the nineteenth century.